Life-saving regular health checks for over 40s to be scrapped in NHS reforms

Life-saving regular health checks for over 40s to be scrapped in NHS reforms

FIVE-yearly check-ups for the over 40s will be scrapped in radical NHS reforms. The health “MoTs” are believed to have helped prevent at least 2,50

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FIVE-yearly check-ups for the over 40s will be scrapped in radical NHS reforms.

The health “MoTs” are believed to have helped prevent at least 2,500 deadly heart attacks or strokes but ministers say the once-size-fits-all approach no longer works.

Getty – Contributor

Over 40s will see their five-yearly check-ups scrapped in new NHS reforms[/caption]

Instead millions of older patients could be offered online tests and given “targeted” advice, depending on their background.

Personal data and technology would pinpoint those most at risk.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: “Personalised, preventative healthcare is mission-critical to the healthcare service we want to build.”

A review looking at how to implement the “smarter” checks will be launched imminently.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock is leading the reform
PA:Press Association

The “MoTs” were introduced ten years ago. Around seven million people aged between 40 and 74 had them in the last five years.

Campaigners fear the changes could result in checks “on the cheap” and fewer people called in to see medics.

Joyce Robins, from Patient Concern, said: “A lot of people hardly ever see a doctor, so how much information would the NHS even have about them?

How would they really know who is most at risk without actually seeing a patient and checking their cholesterol and so forth?”


Officials said the new scheme would target appropriate advice. For example 40 to 49-year-olds, who are more likely to be boozers, could be warned about alcohol use.

NHS medical director Prof Stephen Powis said: “The time is right to take a look at if NHS health checks could be targeted differently to prevent and tackle major killer conditions like heart disease, cancer and dementia.

“Taking a smarter, data-driven approach has potential to give people the tools they need to improve and manage their health.”

Prof Stephen Powis believes a ‘smarter, data-driven’ approach would benefit patients more than regular check-ups

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